Football in LA? Not anytime soon

If the Minnesota Vikings actually do flee to Los Angeles, it’ll be at least four years before they’d have a new stadium to play in.

That much was made clear today when the developer of a proposed stadium in downtown Los Angeles presented a 10,000 page environmental impact statement, ESPN reports:

If everything goes according to plan, Farmers Field would be in position to begin construction by March 2013, similar to a competing stadium proposed by real estate magnate Ed Roski in the City of Industry, which has been ready to push dirt since 2009. Both stadiums, however, need a long-term commitment from a team before construction can begin. And whenever construction does begin, Leiweke said it will be about four years until the stadium is finished.

“No one is going to push dirt until they know they have a team,” Leiweke said. “If we have a full environmental impact report approved by the end of this year, we’re in the same place the City of Industry is. The difference is we have a set of design drawings we’ve taken a risk on so we’d be a little further ahead there.

Whatever infrastructure has to be built in Minnesota for a Vikings stadium is nothing compared to what’s facing Los Angeles, according to the Los Angeles Times. The report says nearly 20,000 cars would be added to the traffic-choked highways on game days.

With “unavoidable significant impacts” expected at an array of downtown freeway offramps, stadium developer Anschutz Entertainment Group plans to provide an array of traffic measures, including $10 million to upgrade a light rail station on Pico Boulevard and $2.4 million to help Caltrans add a lane to the Hollywood Freeway between the four-level interchange and Alvarado Street.

Nothing is going to happen now for at least six months. The filing of the impact report opens a 6-month window for comment.